Leah Mills lives a life of a fugitive – kept on the run by one terrible day from her past. It is a lonely life, without a social life or friends until – longing for a connection – she meets Julian. For the first time she dares to believe she can live a normal life.
Then, on the fourteenth anniversary of that day, she receives a card. Someone knows the truth about what happened. Someone who won’t stop until they’ve destroyed the life Leah has created.
But is Leah all she seems? Or does she deserve everything she gets?
I had this book waiting to be read in my kindle for a few months. Upon realising that the author would soon publish another book, I decided to give it a go and I have to say that I wasn't disappointed.
"...my past had erased any chance of a future."
Leah Mills is hiding a terrible secret. She did something dreadful when she was a teenager and is still suffering the consequences. Weighed down by guilt, she lives in solitude. She keeps herself to herself and her only human interaction takes place at work at the local library. Rather than living, she's merely existing.
"For years I had successfully avoided the past, but now it was sucking me back in."
But now her dark past is catching up with her. On the anniversary of that terrible day, she receives a card. Someone knows who she is and what she did. Someone is back to punish her. Who is this person? Why now after all these years? Leah is convinced this person won't stop until they have destroyed her.
"...my life was my penance."
The story alternates between the past, when Leah was at school, and the present when she's a shell of her former self. The author skilfully takes us through past and present events without revealing anything on Leah's secret.
As I was reading I kept asking myself: But what horrible thing had she done? What had she done? There were times when I couldn't cope with my curiosity and the eagerness to know what had happened in Leah's past. The author kept hold of the secret as much as she could, and I felt as if I was actually being tortured by her as it's only at the very end (and what an ending!!) that we are told what had actually taken place.
On the whole, I enjoyed reading this book, however, I must say that at times the story drags on a bit and it's only in the last 20% that it really gains good momentum. Also, I couldn't warm to any of the characters, not even to Leah. I thought they were all too dull, too serious.
However I don't want to give the impression that this is not a good book. In fact this is a great mystery that kept me hooked and interested till the end and I find no problem in recommending it. This was my first book by this author and I'm now looking forward to read the next one due out in February 16.
With thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for approving my request to read and review this book.
Kathryn Croft is the bestselling author of The Girl With No Past, which spent over four weeks at number one in the Amazon chart. Her first two novels, Behind Closed Doors and The Stranger Within, reached number one in the psychological thriller charts.
Her fourth novel, The Girl You Lost, will be published on 5th February 2016, and is now available for preorder on Amazon.
After six years teaching secondary school English, Kathryn now writes full time and has a publishing deal with Bookouture.
Having always been an avid reader, Kathryn believes in the power of words to entertain, teach and transform lives. She is also a firm believer in following your dreams and says anything is possible if you work hard enough and never give up!
Kathryn lives in Guildford, Surrey with her husband, baby son and two cats.